NASCAR on ESPN

NASCAR On ESPN

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NASCAR on ESPN

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NASCAR on ESPN is the coverage of NASCAR on ESPN, ESPN2, and ABC. ABC, and later ESPN, carried NASCAR races from the sanctioning body's top three divisions at various points from the early 1960s until 2002. ESPN resumed coverage of NASCAR with the Nationwide Series race at Daytona in February 2007.

History

ABC's involvement with NASCAR began in the days of ABC's Wide World of Sports, in which it presented some of the biggest races in stock car racing. One of its events was the Daytona 500. ABC showed the last half of the race, except in 1976, when it showed the first 30 laps, went to the Olympics and then came back for the wild finish, in which David Pearson edged out Richard Petty with both cars sliding sideways across the track. The race TV rights went to CBS Sports in 1979. For much of the 1970s and 1980s, ABC broadcast NASCAR races on tape delay. The commentary was added later in post production. They would actually sit in the booth and call something live if they needed to for the satellite feed. Otherwise, ABC would do all the editing afterwards for the final telecast.

ESPN began showing NASCAR races in 1981, with the first event being at North Carolina Speedway. The last of its 265 Cup telecasts (that number includes some on ABC Sports) was the 2000 Atlanta fall race (now the Labor Day Classic 500). Even though Fox, FX, NBC, and TNT were the exclusive broadcasters of the Winston/Nextel Cup Series and the Busch Series from 2001 to 2006,...
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